Parasitology Training Manual

Introduction To The Flagellates

The following organisms will be studied here. Click on the link to view that section.

Giardia lamblia
Balantidium coli
Enteromonas hominis
Retortamonas intestinalis
Chilomastix mesnili
Trichomonas hominis
Trichomonas vaginalis


There are three organisms in this group considered pathogenic, Giardia lamblia, Balantidium coli and Trichomonas vaginalis. Trichomonas vaginalis a pathogen of the urogenital tract is a rare times found as a contaminant in stool samples.

Most of the flagellates are small, under 12 microns and lack interior detail because they stain poorly making identification difficult. In many cases there size and morphology profiles overlap complicating matters further. Proper scanning and microscopy technique are essential. Please refer to the "Flagellates of Man". (26)

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